Under the archangel’s protection

In around 1300, the population of the Nera river valley floor were exposed to increasing dangers of raids and attacks. In a quest for safety and freedom, they decided to unite and found the Castrum Sancti Angeli castle, which they placed under the protection of the Archangel Michael. The medieval origins of Castelsantangelo sul Nera are still visible to day in the town’s structure: the triangular castle (castrum) with a square tower (turris capitis), perimeter walls and entrance gates. The castle’s watchtower is joined to the fortified walls, whose communication trenches and battlements are still intact in places. MORE DETAILES

TO VISIT In piazza del Ponte (1) stands the church of St Sebastian (2) , built in 1576. From Via delle Mura Castellane (meaning “castle wall street”), continuing towards the river, you will come to the Red Deer Visitor Centre (3) and the Wildlife Centre (4) where it is possible to observe some of these animals which have been reintroduced to the Park. Following the castle walls, you will arrive at the Castle gates (5) . Moving on, you will come to the Romanesque church of St Martin of the Gualdese (6) built in the 14th century, with a pillared portal and a bell tower with mullioned windows. The interior is rich in frescoes and has a single nave. The main altar, made from a huge carved stone, is set under an elegant ogival baldachin supported by two slender columns with capitals on the backs of two lions. The numerous frescoes are in the Umbrian style and some are attributed to Paolo Bontulli from Percanestro. Continuing to the right, you will come to the gate of Sant’Angelo (7). From here, you can reach the 14th century church of St Stephen (8) which has a solemn bell tower. From the Nocrina gate (9), with its characteristic double arch, you can continue to the monastery of St Liberatore (10) . The interior is a collection of vaults and narrow corridors notable for their bare stone. Of particular interest are the chapel, with its 15th and 16th century Umbrian-style paintings, and the many frescoes.

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